Does anyone remember the concept “Star of the Week” from elementary school? For those unfamiliar, it involved one chid in the class being picked each week to be the ‘star’. Along with being assigned ‘special’ classroom responsibilities such as being the line leader, the star would often also create & share an “All About Me” poster telling about him/herself. For example:
I thought I would do something similar but with a twist…
Star of the Week: The Foodie Edition
a.k.a socca flour, chana dal flour, gram flour, besan, garbanzo bean flour
What Is It?
- As the name suggests, it is flour made from dried chickpeas and has a slightly nutty taste. Although it seems to be recently gaining popularity in the west given the rise of gluten intolerances, chickpea flour has been a staple in Indian kitchens for centuries (India-1, Rest of the World-0 )!
Why You Want To Eat It?
- Chickpea flour is probably one of the most underrated and underused flours. While I am tolerant of gluten and wheat, I still want to incorporate more chickpea flour into my everyday diet. The flour’s 3 USPs, in my opinion, are its protein, iron, and fibre content:
- It also stands tête à tête with whole-wheat flour: both are 110 calories but chickpea flour has 2g more protein and 1g more fiber!
How You Can Eat It?
- Other than the usual Indian recipes for dhoklas, pakoras, chilla, dosas, idlis , my intake of chickpea flour is still fairly minimal. I’ve read that chickpea flour can be used as a thickener, as a base for batters, as a wheat flour alternative in baking, or even mixed with water as an egg substitute. After seeing a recipe on Nada’s blog for socca pizza, I knew I had to try it.
It was absolutely delicious, easy, refrigerated well (hello, cold leftover pizza!) and I highly recommend you try it out. If you’re somewhat doubtful, ask yourself this: when has the combination of marinara sauce and cheese ever been a bad idea?
What’s the latest ingredient/food you’ve tried?